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LAPD Testing Knife Allegedly Found on OJ's Property

Though police spokesman warns the entire story could be 'bogus'

(Newser) - An LAPD spokesman has confirmed a TMZ report that detectives are investigating a knife said to have been found on the former estate of OJ Simpson—possibly a weapon involved in the stabbings that killed Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman, the AP reports. LAPD Capt. Andy Neiman said the... More »

TMZ Has Crazy Story About an OJ Knife

If true, this could be huge

(Newser) - Its sources are just that—"sources," with no more specific identifiers other than that they're in law enforcement—but TMZ has an incredible story about an allegedly hush-hush investigation being conducted by the LAPD in connection with a knife supposedly found on the perimeter of the former... More »

Cop: Fake Evidence, Lying 'Part of the Game'

Florida deputy spills tactics to DC Post

(Newser) - Sheriff's deputies in Palm Beach, Fla., don't lie and plant evidence because they're particularly corrupt or desperate to make an arrest—they do it as a way of life, according to a deputy who spoke anonymously. DC Post caught up with him after he posted a blog... More »

How Hair Can (and Can't) Tell Us If Someone Is Dead

Fungus-eaten locks don't mean a missing person is dead

(Newser) - If hair at a crime scene shows signs of a "fungal invasion," forensic scientists may well conclude the hair's owner is dead—but that's not the case, a new study in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B explains. Conventional wisdom has held that the fungi... More »

How Police Destroy Leftover Drug Evidence

Officials face numerous hurdles in incineration process

(Newser) - What happens to all the drugs police seize, once the stuff has already served its purpose as evidence? Well, it's typically burned, the AP reports, though there's a lot of variety in how authorities go about it. Drugs have been incinerated everywhere from crematories to factories to hospitals.... More »

Cops Take New Look at Cobain Death, Find Zilch

But police will release some previously unseen photos

(Newser) - Are police reopening the case of Kurt Cobain's death? Media reports out of Seattle this morning indicated as much, as KIRO 7 reported that police had developed four previously unseen rolls of film that had been sitting in the evidence vault since the Nirvana frontman's death. Police said... More »

Dear Prosecutors, Rap Lyrics Aren't Actual Confessions

Let's keep them out of courtrooms: Erik Nielson and Charis Kubrin

(Newser) - When Vonte Skinner was convicted of attempted murder in 2008, the evidence against him included 13 pages of violent rap lyrics. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison, but four years later, an appellate court ruled that the lyrics weren’t admissible evidence—and it overturned his conviction. New... More »

Zimmerman Not Getting His Gun Back Yet, After All

Return is on hold pending the Department of Justice's probe

(Newser) - The FBI has thrown the brakes on a plan to return George Zimmerman's gun , asking Florida authorities to hold on to all evidence until it completes its civil rights investigation . "They have an investigation they are conducting," a Sanford police official tells USA Today . "Until that... More »

FBI: No Ricin at Suspect's Home

Lawyer says Paul Kevin Curtis is the 'perfect scapegoat'

(Newser) - Federal investigators haven't found any ricin, any ricin ingredients, or even any devices that could have been used to make ricin, "like a blender or something," in suspect Paul Kevin Curtis' home, an FBI agent testified in a hearing yesterday, according to the AP . Nor did Curtis'... More »

Blood of India Rape Victim 'on Clothes of Accused'

Prosecutor links accused men to forensic evidence

(Newser) - The latest in the India gang-rape case: A public prosecutor said yesterday that forensic evidence links the accused to the monstrous rape of a 23-year-old woman on a Delhi bus, the Guardian reports. In a pretrial hearing, the prosecutor told a judge that the five accused men tried burning their... More »

Superstorm Ruined Scads of NYPD Evidence

Thousands of barrels of DNA evidence may be irretrievable

(Newser) - Superstorm Sandy left the NYPD with a huge headache by swamping a pair of warehouses holding huge amounts of evidence. The storm surge breached the warehouses and sent some of the thousands of barrels containing DNA evidence into the muck, possibly contaminating some and creating a mess that has made... More »

Police Chemist Arrested for Faking Drug Tests

Thousands of convictions could go out the window in Boston

(Newser) - Former Massachusetts State Police chemist Annie Dookhan was led out of her home in handcuffs today after sparking a scandal that could wind up freeing thousands jailed on drug charges. Dookhan allegedly lied both when applying for her job and under oath about having a master's in chemistry, and... More »

Child's Clothes, Toy Found in Etan Patz Suspect's Home

Could be first physical evidence backing Pedro Hernandez's confession

(Newser) - A search of Pedro Hernandez's home on Wednesday turned up child's clothing and a toy that are both "age appropriate" for Etan Patz, reports the New York Post . Hernandez himself has a son, so the evidence will have to be tested against both his and Etan's... More »

McNamee: Wife Nagged Me to Save Clemens Evidence

Wife complained he would be fall guy for Clemens

(Newser) - Brian McNamee says that he's got physical evidence that Roger Clemens used steroids thanks to his wife's foresight/complaining. McNamee took the stand again today and testified that while he was injecting Clemens with steroids, his wife was constantly warning him that if something went wrong, "You're... More »

Prosecutors Release Zimmerman Witness List

Audio experts, Trayvon Martin's family on the list

(Newser) - Prosecutors gave the public a small, censored look at their case against George Zimmerman yesterday, delivering an eight-page list of witnesses it intends to call to the stand and evidence it intends to use. It also sent evidence to Zimmerman's defense team, though the team would say only that... More »

Kent State Victims Demand New Inquiry

They think the National Guard was ordered to fire exactly 42 years ago

(Newser) - It's been precisely 42 years since National Guard members opened fire indiscriminately on protesters at Kent State University, but the survivors of the shooting are still looking for answers. A group of seven wounded in the incident said yesterday they were beginning a campaign to convince lawmakers to hold... More »

FBI Evidence Screw-Ups Hidden in Hundreds of Cases

Some defendants left to rot in prison, or executed

(Newser) - Prosecutors have failed to notify hundreds of defendants and their attorneys about faulty FBI forensics work that may exonerate them, according to an in-depth Washington Post investigation. The Justice Department spent nine years—from 1996 to 2004—conducting what it calls an "exhaustive" review of 13 agents' forensic work... More »

Prosecutors Hid Screw-Up in Anthony Trial: Witness

She only searched for chloroform once

(Newser) - The prosecution witness who testified that Casey Anthony ran online searches for “chloroform” 84 times says he screwed up—and that prosecutors ignored him when he let them know. The prosecution used John Bradley’s software to make its assertions about Anthony’s search habits. But Bradley tells the... More »

Caylee's Killer May Have Put Heart Sticker Over Her Mouth

Forensics expert found dime-sized residue on duct tape

(Newser) - A heart-shaped sticker might have been affixed to the duct tape placed over Caylee Anthony's mouth, according to the testimony of a forensic examiner in the murder trial of mom Casey Anthony. Residue in the dime-sized shape of a heart was observed on the duct tape, reports People, and... More »

Toyota Accused of Hiding Evidence in Rollover Case

Special counsel will investigate claims

(Newser) - Toyota is accused of hiding evidence during a 2006 lawsuit regarding a woman paralyzed in a crash, and a Texas judge has appointed special counsel to investigate the claims. In 2005, Pennie Green swerved on a highway and her 1997 Camry rolled over. The roof collapsed and broke her spine,... More »

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